King Henry VIII, was the second Monarch of Tudor dynasty. He was King of England from 21 April, 1509 until his death by 28 January 1547. King Henry was famous for two main reasons – one for separating Church of England from Roman Catholic Church; and second reason, he was most notoriously famous for, was his Six Wives and their fate bestowed by King Henry. These posts are dedicated to Six Wives of King Henry VIII. It’s not a historical fact or document, rather a conversational satirical viewpoint of ill-fated Queens.
Wife # 6 – I am Catherine Parr, Sixth wife of King Henry VIII
The last wife I was. Only wife who outlived the King Henry VIII, yes, this is what I want to be known for.
LOL… I know my predecessors (five Queens), must be twisting and turning in their graves, hearing this. 👿
Okay, Anne of Cleves, I can give you that outlived me, but actually by that time you were not his wife, infact you were his sister. 😛
Enough boasting about saving my head from my Husband’s Love for beheading. Let’s focus on my story.
I, Catherine Parr, was born to Sir Thomas Parr and his wife, Maud Green. I belonged to a niche family, and thus was educated well. It was my interest in learning which actually persuaded me to achieve what my contemporaries hadn’t. I learned French, Italian, Latin and Greek too. I was basically not a needle and sewing kind of girl. 😕 I remember, once I said to my mamma that “my hands are ordained to touch crowns and sceptres, not spindles and needles”. True.
Did you know that I was the most married Queen of England. Henry was my third husband, and after his death, I married once more. I could have married again, if I have lived more. 😛
Talking about my marriages, my first one was to Sir Edward Borough, who died of sickness in his twenties. After my first husband death, I married, Lord John Latimer, who was twice my age, and was already twice widowed. My second marriage also turned into death of my husband by poor health. I was a good wife though. I nursed him in his ill health, and took care of his kids from earlier marriages, like they were my own.
Question now, How a twice widowed, in her thirties, lady who has never even have conceived a child, became the desire of King Henry VIII? Henry, who was only interested in two things a woman can give him – Sex and a Son. Well, I could give him sex, but I was not exactly his type, you know brain dead, beautiful and a young girl. I was a woman in thirties remember? Although, I was still half of Henry’s age. 😛
Henry was old, sick, and actually devastated because of his crushed ego. Catherine Howard, his fifth wife, was just executed, as she cheated on Henry, blowing out that Big Ego of King Henry. He was also kind of impotent by that time. So, he was actually looking for a affectionate wife, not a sexy young silly Queen. And…. I fit the bill perfectly. Only problem, I had Brains. 😎
There was one more problem, by the time Henry proposed to me. I was in love with someone else. Thomas Seymour, was the love of my life, and I so wanted to marry him, after my second husband’s death. But, who can say to a King, specially when his name is Henry VIII? 😐
I sacrificed my love and married the King. I was the Queen. Sixth Queen to King Henry VIII. I was a good wife to him. I nursed him, took care of all his needs. Infact I even managed to reconcile him with his children, Mary and Elizabeth. I took full control of educating them too, specially Elizabeth and Edward. I loved all of them. I would say I fulfilled all my duties.
I was a good Queen too. I was loyal to my King. I was sympathetic to my people. I was loved by everyone, inside and out of the court. I was considered a intelligent Queen, infact, my place was famous for having intelligent debates and conversations. I was also made regent in the absence of Henry, when he went for war.
I had my cons too. Most prominent being, my foolishness to debate with a King. I discussed religious matters with him, and that agonized him a bit too much. He took it as his insult, as a woman was advising her husband on matters of religion. He said to me “ye are become a doctor, Kate, to instruct us” 😦
I didn’t intended to. But, you know Henry…. he soon issued my arrest warrant. Only that I was so loved among all that a loyal servant dropped this letter of arrest to my knowledge first. Only thing that this arrest warrant could have turned into was my beheading….
Only that my wits helped me, and I was quick to act in this case. I ran to my King and tried to convince him otherwise. I said to him, “I am but a woman, with all the imperfections natural to the weakness of my sex; therefore in all matters of doubt and difficulty I must refer myself to your Majesty’s better judgment, as to my lord and head”. His ego was satisfied with my bowing down to his superiority, and this saved my head. Phew!!!
Too glad for that.
Henry died and I was Free. I was free to marry my Love, Thomas Seymour. Little did I know that Love and marriage are two different things. People change in Love and sometimes in Marriage too. It was not a happy marriage, but I did get pregnant this time and gave birth to a beautiful daughter. Only that I didn’t lived long enough to enjoy real motherhood.
Whatever I have learned from my life was, that no matter you are the Queen, or a simple woman, a wife is always treated the same way, and should always try to please her husband, if she wants to live a longer life. Actually if she wants to outlive a husband like King Henry VIII. 😛